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Anticoagulants

Rapid uptake of new oral anticoagulants in the United States

Since 2010, four new direct oral anticoagulant drugs (DOACs) have been rapidly adopted and contributed to an increase in atrial fibrillation patients treated with anticoagulants. In the image, micrograph of a blood clot showing erythrocytes and leukocytes

Source: Yale Rosen / Wikimedia Commons

New direct oral anticoagulants can be used as an alternative to warfarin to treat patients at risk of a blood clot (pictured)

Since 2010, four new direct oral anticoagulant drugs (DOACs, also known as NOACs) — dabigatran, rivaroxaban, apixaban and edoxaban — have been introduced into US clinical practice. To assess their uptake, researchers analysed data from a nationally representative audit of physician visits.

Between 2009 and 2014, visits in which patients were using an oral anticoagulant rose from 2.05 million to 2.83 million per quarter (P<0.001), with DOACs accounting for 38.2% of the total in 2014. Visits involving patients with atrial fibrillation using anticoagulants rose from 51.9% in 2009 to 66.9% in 2014. In 2014, rivaroxaban was the most commonly prescribed DOAC for atrial fibrillation (47.9% of total visits), followed by apixaban (26.5%) and dabigatran (25.5%). Edoxaban had not yet been introduced.

DOACs have been rapidly adopted and have contributed to an increase in atrial fibrillation patients treated with anticoagulants, conclude the authors in The American Journal of Medicine (online, 2 July 2015)[1]. 

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2015.20069088

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Supplementary images

  • Since 2010, four new direct oral anticoagulant drugs (DOACs) have been rapidly adopted and contributed to an increase in atrial fibrillation patients treated with anticoagulants. In the image, micrograph of a blood clot showing erythrocytes and leukocytes

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